Year levels



$19 per student


Monday to Friday (during school term)

Student Ratio

1 adult for every 10 students

There’s nothing like studying a species up close to get a grasp of how they’ve adapted to their environment.

Term 4 program bookings will be self-guided only (no workshops). Teachers can still access the Teaching Guide resource from this page to support student learning.

Program description

Staying Alive develops student knowledge about animal adaptations, ecological relationships and human impact. Through engaging activities and practical investigations, students will gather data and extend their skills. They will enjoy an invaluable real-world experience that will support them to excel in VCE Biology Unit 1.

Students will learn: 

  • How animals have adapted to stay alive in their ecosystem
  • How to collect qualitative and quantitative data on an Australian species through practical investigations
  • How conservation projects can impact the survival of a species

Program sequence

Before your visit

Use the activities in the Teaching Guide (below) to spark students' curiosity and prepare them for activities they will do while at the Sanctuary.

During your visit

Students will practise using their knowledge and skills. Healesville Sanctuary Teachers will support students to independently collect first-hand data by observing the species of their choice. 

Your Sanctuary visit will include: A Welcome (for arrivals between 9:50am-10:10am), Healesville Sanctuary Teacher workshopobservation and data collection time, Spirits of the Sky presentation and keeper talks. Check out your Teaching Guide for what else students should do while at the Sanctuary.

After your visit

Use activities in the Teaching Guide to help students complete their practical investigation and reflection back at school.

Program resources

VCE teaching guides are password protected. You will receive the password via email six and two weeks before your excursion. You can also request the password upon booking.

Learning outcomes

Victorian Certificate of Education (VCE) – Biology

Unit 1: How do living things stay alive?

Area of Study 2: How do living systems sustain life?

  • Students meet wildlife up close to study adaptations, ecological relationships and human impacts to investigate how living things survive

Area of Study 3: Practical Investigation

  • Students collect qualitative and quantitative data on their chosen species to complete their Practical Investigation back at school

Plan your excursion 

Staying Aliveis an outdoor all-weather program; the students will need appropriate clothing for weather conditions. This could include a raincoat, hat and sun protection. 

Bring what students need to record their research e.g. notes, drawings, photographs, videos, voice memos, diagrams.  

School groups will enter Healesville Sanctuary via the Main Entrance. Organising teachers please check in with our Admissions team upon arrival. More information.

All onsite excursion bookings are subject to coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions and as such are subject to change in line with the Victorian Chief Health Officer’s advice. We will be in contact with all teachers prior to their booked date if we need to clarify any new requirements. 

Book your education experience

Fill out an online form to request a booking for your zoo education experience

Request booking now

You will need to know the following to book your zoo excursion or online workshop:

  • Education program of your choice (if applicable)
  • Preferred date
  • School name and address
  • Contact details of organising teacher
  • Number of students/classes and their year level